Nissan aiming for Daytona glory 20 years later

20 years after their last win in Daytona, Nissan returns

Nissan aiming for Daytona glory 20 years later

Nissan has its sights set on returning to victory lane at the Rolex 24 at Daytona - 22 years after first tasting success at the historic Florida venue known as the “World Center of Racing”.

Official Nissan Nismo partner team and two-time American Le Mans Sereis P1 champions Muscle Milk Pickett Racing will lead the charge at Daytona alongside FIA World Endurance Championship LM P2 title winners Oak Racing.

Nissan became the first Japanese manufacturer to take the overall win at the Rolex 24 at Daytona in 1992 when Masahiro Hasemi, Kazuyoshi Hoshino and Toshio Suzuki triumphed with the Nissan R91CP.

#42 OAK Racing Morgan Nissan: Olivier Pla, Roman Rusinov, Gustavo Yacaman
#42 OAK Racing Morgan Nissan: Olivier Pla, Roman Rusinov, Gustavo Yacaman

Photo by: Trevor Horn

The Japanese trio completed 2,712.720 miles (762 laps) over the 24-hour journey with the 800 horsepower R91CP. They took the lead on the second lap of the race and never surrendered it.

Nissan had won its class (and finished second overall) the previous year in 1991 with Bob Earl, Derek Daly, Chip Robinson, and Geoff Brabham behind the wheel of a Nissan R90CK.

Remarkably, the distance record from the 1992 winning Nissan remains unbeaten to this day.

Two years later, Nissan was again successful – this time taking the victory with the No. 76 Nissan 300ZX-Turbo piloted by Paul Gentilozzi, Scott Pruett, Butch Leitzinger and Steve Millen.

The 300ZX covered 707 laps, 2,516.92 miles and averaged 104.80 mph. Leading for all but 111 laps, including the final 427, the team’s margin of victory was a dominating 24 laps. The No.76 machine scored the first overall win in the Rolex 24 for a GT car since 1983 and the first win for a front-engine car since 1976.

Muscle Milk Pickett Racing will return this year with Klaus Graf and Nissan’s 2011 FIA GT1 World Champion Lucas Luhr as its full-season drivers for the new TUDOR United SportsCar Championship which brings together the American Le Mans Series and the GRAND-AM Rolex Series into a single championship. Young Nissan LM P2 FIA WEC regular Alex Brundle will fill the third seat for the Rolex 24 at Daytona – a race his father Martin Brundle won in 1988.

As part of the Nismo Global Driver Exchange, racers from Nissan’s squad of international drivers will compete for Muscle Milk Pickett Racing at the major endurance events at Daytona, Sebring and Road Atlanta.

While Muscle Milk Pickett Racing will contest the Rolex 24 at Daytona with its Nissan-powered ORECA chassis. Oak Racing will do battle on the Daytona road course with its Morgan driven by Frenchman Olivier Pla, Russian Roman Rusinov, Columbian Gustavo Yacaman and Brit Oliver Webb.

The opening round of the TUDOR Championship - the Rolex 24 at Daytona - takes place January 23 - 26, 2014 at Daytona International Speedway with the green flag scheduled for 2:10 pm (US Eastern) on January 25, 2014.

NISMO

shares
comments
CORE autosport ready for the Rolex 24 at Daytona

Previous article

CORE autosport ready for the Rolex 24 at Daytona

Next article

MOMO NGT Motorsport gears up for season-opening Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona

MOMO NGT Motorsport gears up for season-opening Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona
Load comments
The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence Prime

The significance of the next step in WEC/IMSA convergence

Following the latest convergence connection permitting Le Mans Hypercars from the FIA World Endurance Championship to compete against LMDh entries in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship from 2023, it could open up enticing options not only to manufacturers but also for the calendar and race formats

WEC
Jul 13, 2021
Why a Mazda IMSA Prototype title would bring bitter joy Prime

Why a Mazda IMSA Prototype title would bring bitter joy

Can Mazda win this year’s IMSA Prototype championship? Undoubtedly. But it will be the culmination of an achingly hard struggle, after which the brand has decided to quit. David Malsher-Lopez tells the story of a bizarre blend of heartache and positivity.

IMSA
Apr 6, 2021
The GTE dilemma that IMSA has created for the WEC Prime

The GTE dilemma that IMSA has created for the WEC

The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s decision to scrap its GT Le Mans class for 2022 raises the question of whether the FIA World Endurance Championship should phase out GTE cars. But it's a much harder decision than it appears on the surface.

WEC
Feb 3, 2021
Nine things to watch at the 2021 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona Prime

Nine things to watch at the 2021 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona

After a 100-minute sprint race to whet the appetite, the 2021 IMSA SportsCar Championship gets underway properly this weekend. With plenty of significant changes during the winter, here are the key points you need to keep an eye on

IMSA
Jan 29, 2021
Why Magnussen is relishing a fresh start in sportscars Prime

Why Magnussen is relishing a fresh start in sportscars

Having gone over seven years without a race win through spells with McLaren, Renault and Haas, Kevin Magnussen's departure from Formula 1 for IMSA with big-hitters Chip Ganassi Racing could give him what he craves most - a chance of success

IMSA
Jan 29, 2021
Oliver Gavin's Corvette Racing highlights Prime

Oliver Gavin's Corvette Racing highlights

Oliver Gavin has stepped down from the full-time Corvette Racing line-up after a stellar career with the team spanning nearly 20 years. He looks back on a stint that encompassed, among other successes, five Le Mans 24 Hours victories.

Le Mans
Jan 28, 2021
How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends Prime

How Tandy joined an exclusive club of endurance legends

Victory at last year's Spa 24 Hours meant Nick Tandy had completed the unofficial sextuple crown of the world's six biggest endurance races, becoming the first Briton to do so. Ahead of his fresh start with Corvette Racing, he explains how he did it…

Le Mans
Jan 24, 2021
The 12 greatest Sebring 12 Hours ranked Prime

The 12 greatest Sebring 12 Hours ranked

The 2020 edition of the Florida sportscar classic is finally taking place this weekend, eight months after its traditional date in March. That meant there was plenty of time for Motorsport.com to pour over its previous 67 races and select the best.

IMSA
Nov 11, 2020